Monday, 22 November 2010

Why wouldn't I do a Phd?

Adjusted email (for peoples names & so you can undertsand the conversation) on where I stand, alone on this place we call earth.
The past is the future.
Perfection is key, forgetfulness is not allowed.

Sometimes life has to get beyond university, I may be capable of a Phd but occasionally I wish life was a little more 'normal'. To have the chance to be doing something outside of University is a challenge in its own right. Yes there is a lot to be gained from doing a Phd, but specialising too much can hinder career options, although many people have swapped there career paths completely at the ages of 40, 50 and so on (without Phds), one guy turned geology to religion another religion to nursing, another PA to counselling.

I often find my self in a quandary debating where I should be and what I need to do to get life to just settle. In many respects my main aims are to stay within the environment sector, I enjoy geography too much it has a spell on me (although the depresssed me would say the opposite I'm sure the subject can feel like a big hole). The other aim is to have my own place to live and not be affected by living with family still. Family makes lots of decisions a lot harder, and believing your own thoughts, portraying what you want to do in life to the family is tough. The chance to work outside of university and gain work experience instead of academic experience is something companies, trusts, institutions and councils and quangos are always interested in. This is where family think I should go, none the less I've always wanted to work within Environmental Management/Consultancy in the last few years. So the family are happy at least for this (although some do question whether I should change path completely, mainly because they think I have no guts, self esteem or confidence. I have these when working independently away from home). I try to make myself more independent, but the rain cloud keeps following me around. If I get kicked along, it'll only hurt harder, I have structure and capabilties, but no one likes to believe me. Its always the way, I'm destined to trip over.

Can I work in an office environment, can I work solo, can I bring projects in on time, operate in teams, team lead? Adapting academic material on your CV to work is not quite the same as adapting work to work. Practical experience, work experience whilst I have a fair bit still needs to grow some more. I have a good starting point, but indecisive I am. What my heart and head tell me are very different things. In the words of some. "I don't want to spite my nose for my face". Chopping my feet off to save my legs is important. I don't want to be a missery my whole life, but the futures bleak quite often. Hence my two aims are my key drivers - bad days do happen as I said, family stuff and what amounts to peer pressure.

You may think thats not a sound answer but they are important thoughts in my head, my decision counts and unfortunately is final when the hammer falls, sometimes its too late to change. I have large questions like what am I doing here and why was I born and what happens after death to contend with, I'm easily depressed and easy to just let other people think they are right because arguing is just too much energy. It doesn't help my memory's a blur.

Friends remember my mum more than I can. A lot of people say "your mum would say this... ; want you to do that..." and provide excellent examples, but however much I believe and know, I can't hear her voice in my head anymore. Eight years have gone by and what made life mean something back then is not here. :-(

Sometimes just being part of something is enough, but if I'm not interested or exhausted I don't care. I'm lousy like that (but I do care really, I'm just burnt out), perfection is everything these days and I haven't got it. Having said that some perfectionists are weird. A high level of quality is more important, but often people just slam it back saying its not good enough, cutting you down. What has happened to society, - a nice community, appreciatative people.

I don't care about upsetting family, but I'd prefer not to, I've had enough of stress in the last 10 years as it is. So the less stress there is the better. Trying to find the correct career route is not an easy choice even if I have general themes.

Life has turned in to one big depressing circle.
Whatever happened to the special people in life who handed out hugs. People you miss from times gone by.

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